Counsel of Chalcedon
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Sermon on Luke 4:1-13 - The Tempter in the Temptation of Jesus

The temptation of Jesus in the wilderness by Satan has two characteristics: historicity and objectivity. It really took place. Some have been doubtful at this point because of their failure to distinguish objectivity and physicalness, (materialness, corporealness). Satan is a real, personal, created being, but he is not physical with skin and bones. This fact in no way takes away from the historicity or the objectivity of the temptation. "An encounter between persons, especially in the supersensual world, can be perfectly objective without necessarily entering into the sphere of the corporeally perceptible. -- The reduction of all this to the rubric of superstition or psychological derangement is certainly not in accordance with the mind of the evangelists. Anyone who desires to dissociate Jesus from all these and other supernatural phenomena, must do so on the basis of a prior theological or philosophical premises.... " - Vos, pg. 331-332.